Dr. Andy's Poetry and Technology Hour

Catriona McPherson, Mary Mackey, and Jon Johnson

December 08, 2022 Dr. Andy Jones
Dr. Andy's Poetry and Technology Hour
Catriona McPherson, Mary Mackey, and Jon Johnson
Show Notes

On the 12/7/22 edition of Dr. Andy’s Poetry and Technology Hour:

Dr. Andy’s first guest is prolific crimewriter Catriona McPherson, who shares some tantalizing tidbits about her new mystery novel Scot in a Trap. Next, award-winning poet and New York Times best-selling novelist Mary Mackey joins the show to discuss the origins of creativity (as she does in her 2022 book, Creativity: Where Poems Begin), including how a series of high fevers allowed her to access a wordless and inventive headspace. Finally, UCSF Collaborative Learning Environment manager Jon Johnson puts the Technology in Poetry and Technology Hour with his insights on “deep work,” an approach to productivity that recognizes the need to step back.

Catriona McPherson was born near Edinburgh and lived there, in Ayrshire, in Dumfriesshire and in Galloway before moving to California in 2010, where she lives on the land of the Patwin people. A born swot, she finally left school at age thirty with a PhD in linguistics from Edinburgh University. Proper jobs have included banking (hopeless), library work in local studies and fine art (heaven), and a short burst of academia (hell). But she’s been a full-time writer since 2005 and hopes never to have a proper job again. Among numerous prizes, she has won two of Left Coast Crime's coveted Humorous Lefty Awards for the Last Ditch comedies.

Mary Mackey has published eight volumes of poetry (including Sugar Zone, winner of the 2012 PEN Oakland Josephine Miles Award for Literary Excellence; and The Jaguars That Prowl Our Dreams, winner of the Erich Hoffer Award for the Best Book Published by a Small Press), a short novel (Immersion—the first novel published by a Second Wave feminist press), and thirteen other novels. Her recently published (2022) non-fiction book Creativity: Where Poems Begin looks at the origins of inspiration.

Mackey’s works have appeared on The New York Times and San Francisco Chronicle Bestseller Lists, sold over a million and a half copies, and been translated into twelve foreign languages including Japanese, Russian, Hebrew, Greek, and Finnish. A screenwriter as well as a novelist and poet, she has sold feature-length screenplays to Warner Brothers as well as to independent film companies. 

Jon Johnson is the manager of the UCSF Collaborative Learning Environment, and Lead Developer on The Ilios Project: Curriculum Management for the Health Professions. His areas of expertise include educational administration and curriculum development, building diverse teams, open source community maintenance and communication, and organization architecture and development.

Catriona McPherson will read from her new novel Scot in a Trap at the Avid Reader bookstore, 617 2nd St in Davis, Thursday, Dec 8, from 6:00 to 7:00 p.m. She will be bringing wrapped chocolates in addition to the wine, soft drinks, and British candies already provided.

Beth Suter and Bethanie Humphries will read at the Poetry Night Reading Series on December 15th.

Find out more about Dr. Andy's Poetry Night Reading Series in Davis, California by visiting http://www.poetryindavis.com. Invite your friends to sign up for the mailing list. To learn more about Dr. Andy’s tiny media fiefdom, visit his weekly newsletter at https://andyjones.substack.com and follow him on Twitter at https://twitter.com/andyojones.